Saudi Arabia: Najran – Aj-Janabi Souq
One of the most unique markets I’ve ever seen is in Najran – the Aj-Janabi Souq. j-Janabi in local language means a specific type of dagger, a boomerang-shaped one, that is very traditional in this area (similar to Yemen) and is part of the local dress. While you can find many things at the market – sheep, rice, incense, water pouches made from cow guts – it’s really all about the daggers. There are whopping 70+ stores selling nothing but daggers, leather dagger holsters and paraphernalia! You can’t get more traditional and authentic then this! The dagger is a national symbol of the tribes inhabiting the area and local men take great pride in wearing them. And being so close to Yemen, any other weaponry is national pride as well – you gotta get a nice leather case for your rustic AK-47. Aj-Janabi Souq is over 150 years old and is as much a market as a social gathering place for local elders.